Contemporary Talents of Japan: Kacho Fugetsu
Thursday, July 12 through Saturday, August 11
Opening Reception: Thursday, July 12 from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.
The Ronin Gallery – 425 Madison Avenue (between 48th and 49th Streets), 3rd Floor
With Kacho Fugetsu, The Ronin Gallery presents an exhibition that reinterprets an enduring genre through a contemporary lens. The term “kacho fugetsu” is composed of the kanji for “flower,” “bird,” “wind,” and “moon” (花鳥風月), evoking both the diverse phenomena of the natural world and a metaphorical significance beyond the physical realm. Rooted in a profound respect for the natural world, these specific pairings of birds, insects, and flowers have formed the basis for a powerful aesthetic and emotional tradition in Japanese art.
The featured artist in this exhibition is Asako Iwasawa, the 2018 winner of the Ronin|Globus Artist-in-Residence Program, which seeks to stimulate cross-cultural dialogue through Japan’s vanguard of visual art. A distinguished panel of judges chose Iwasawa from more than 50 applicants based on three criteria: artistic excellence, clarity of concept, and originality in interpretation of this year’s theme of Kacho Fugetsu.
Iwasawa was raised in Tokyo, but she indulged in her love for nature while spending ten years living as a farmer in the countryside. Although she returned to the city, she brought the vivid world of insects, plants, and natural beauty back with her. In her work, Iwasawa looks beyond the physical reality of the natural world and portrays the spirit of nature. As she treads the boundary between imagination and landscape, she challenges her viewers’ sense of place.
In addition to her participation in Contemporary Talents of Japan: Kacho Fugetsu, Iwasawa received round-trip travel from Japan; up to a one-month stay at Globus Washitsu, a tatami-mat oasis in central Manhattan; a stipend; and the opportunity to use Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the program’s charitable sponsor, as an en plein air studio for inspiration.
A number of works by past program participants and finalists will also be on view, including art by Ryo Shinagawa, the Artist-in-Residence Program’s first runner-up, and Yuki Ideguchi, a New York-based Japanese artist who sketched flowers in a garden near his Queens studio for this exhibition.
For more information, please visit The Ronin Gallery’s website.
Featured image by Asako Iwasawa